ARCHITACTICS is now displaying at USIP, Washington DC


ARCHITACTICS: The Role and Responsibility of Architects in Conflict Resolution

SAYA/Design for Change works 2003-2013

 ZeZeZe Gallery, Tel Aviv Harbour, July 18th-August 22nd, 2013

USIP (US Institute of Peace), Washington DC, April 8th- May 12th, 2014

Heller School, Brandies University, Fall 2014 (opening ceremony TBD)


Most of the international conflicts are of territorial nature. They take place in physical space and are aggravated and complicated by spatial and physical actions. Their resolution is ultimately achieved through a realignment of space, a role more often than not, played by lawyers, politicians and security experts often with little or no expertise in dealing with the built environment. Architects, whose domain is the understanding of physical space, are rarely actively involved in the resolution of territorial conflicts and the promotion of peaceful settlements. SAYA’s team believes this to be one source of the severe deficiencies in the Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking process so far. It is this belief which led to the establishment of SAYA Design For Change.

SAYA’s pioneering approach termed by its founders as “Resolution Planning” was developed a decade ago to reclaim the architectural responsibility in designing peace. Its goal is to redefine the role and responsibility of architects in conflict resolution, to re-include the city, the people and their joint future space back into the picture. SAYA’s body of work, often created in collaboration with Palestinian planners and architects, has created a foundation for planning Israeli-Palestinian peace. Their work has served Israeli-Palestinian leaders in the past decade and especially in the previous negotiation rounds, and has defined an unprecedented role for architects in bridging the gap between the broad stroke of policy making, and the reality on the contested ground.

This exhibition summarises the approach of SAYA’s mission-based practice. Rather than diving into the details of their specific proposals, it illustrates the channels of influence this practice has defined for design in peace making. From envisioning peace and how it should look like, through creating tools for peace making, to influencing the “backstage” of peace processes – SAYA’s work demonstrates that architects can influence not only through building and buildings, but also by shaping decisions regarding space and by encouraging decision makers to think as architects. It is our hope that this exhibition will also inspire more architects to think as decision makers and help politicians transcend the boundaries of what they believe is possible to agree upon.

Opening times and events:

The exhibition is on display at the ZeZeZe Architecture Gallery, Hangar 21, Tel Aviv Port, until August 24, and will include the following events:

Thursday, August 1, at 7:30 P.M.: A lecture on “Maps as shapers of the diplomatic discourse,” with Shaul Arieli; Friday, August 9, at 11 A.M.: A gallery conversation with Dan Rotem, representative of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Peace in the Middle East; Thursday, August 22, at 7:30 P.M.: A lecture by Daniel Seidemann of the Terrestrial Jerusalem organization, about spatial-design dimensions in solving the conflict.


Haaretz, July 25th, 2013- “The secret to peace in the Middle East, at an architectural expo” by By Keshet Rosenblum (English/Hebrew)

ArchDaily, July 30th, “ARCHITACTICS EXHIBITION/SAYA” by Alison Furuto

The Smithsonian Magazine, August 20th, 2013, by Yochi Dreazen “Can Architecture Help Solve the Israeli Palestinian Dispute?”

Le Monde, August 22nd, Dessine-moi une autre Jérusalem

Fact Sheet

Project: ARCHITACTICS exhibition, ZeZeZe Gallery, Tel Aviv, July 18-August 22, 2013

Status: open

Location: USIP- 2301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20037

ZeZeZe Gallery, unit 21, Tel Aviv Port


Design: SAYA with Harel Schreiber

Photography: DC- Steven Ruder and Rachel Brandenburg

Tel Aviv- Anka Mirkin, Karen Lee Bar-Sinai